Located on the western and northern shores of Richardson Bay, the incorporated city of Mill Valley encompasses the hillsides and canyons of the eastern slopes of Mt. Tamalpais, north of the Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco. Earliest inhabitants included Coastal Miwok and other early Northern Californian tribes, who settled throughout the north bay.
Today, Mill Valley is known throughout the bay area for its charm, natural beauty and cultural events. Located in Marin County, the natural wooded areas bordering the Pacific Ocean attract visitors from around the world.
In July 2005, CNN/Money and Money magazine ranked Mill Valley tenth on its list of the 100 Best Places to Live in the United States. The city has five elementary schools and one middle school, Mill Valley Middle School, which is a four-time winner of the California Distinguished School Award.
Mill Valley has retained elements of its earlier artistic culture through galleries, festivals, and performances. One such event is its prestigious film festival which annually attracts 200 filmmakers and 40,000 film fans from around the world. The Mill Valley Film Festival has established an impressive track record for launching new films and new filmmakers, and for celebrating the best in independent and world cinema.
Many artists and celebrities have lived in Mill Valley, including Jack Kerouac, Jerry Garcia, Bonnie Raitt, Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, Huey Lewis, Mariel Hemingway, author John Gray, and many others. Another notable Mill Valley resident was Jenny Fulle, the first girl in the US allowed to play Little League!